Posted on 27. April 2016 in Legal Gender Recognition, Press

Yesterday, the Swedish Government announced an initiative [1] to pay economic compensation to trans victims of forced sterilisation in Sweden. Transgender Europe (TGEU) welcomes this initiative which acknowledges the past wrongdoings which violated the human rights, especially physical integrity, of trans people in the country.

Forced sterilisation, a blatant violation of human rights, was a requirement for legal gender recognition until 2013 in Sweden [2]. In mid-2013, 160 individuals who had been forcibly sterilised submitted a claim for compensation. Finally, after a lengthy political process, their voices have been heard and a specific law was announced to enable trans people to seek compensation. TGEU calls on the Swedish Government to ensure that this law is put into practice as soon as possible.

TGEU’s co-chair Alecs Recher comments “this news today comes as a beacon of hope to trans people across Europe. While financial compensation can never give back the physical integrity of the persons, the Swedish government is finally taking responsibility for the pain caused by the practice of forced sterilisation.”

TGEU’s Senior Policy Officer, Richard Köhler adds “We call on 24 more states in Europe to follow suit and end forced sterilisation today. It is unacceptable that trans people are still subject to legally prescribed sterilisation in Europe.”

Currently 24 states [3] in Europe require forced sterilisation from trans people, which keeps many from accessing legal gender recognition. In Sweden the requirement was ruled in breach of the Swedish Constitution and the European Convention on Human Rights in 2012.




For more information:

[1] Regeringskansliet (Swedish)

RFSL statement (English)

[2] “Finally forced sterilisations removed from Swedish legislation”, TGEU, 2013:

[3] The 24 countries in Europe which have procedures in place which have a requirement of sterilisation are: Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belgium, Bosnia & Herzegovina, Bulgaria, Croatia, Czech Republic, Finland, France, Georgia, Greece, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Montenegro, Norway, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Switzerland, Turkey, and Ukraine. For more information see, TGEU’s Nightmare campaign and TGEU’s work on Legal Gender Recognition

Transgender Europe is a European human rights NGO working for the human rights and equality of all trans people. More Information:

Transgender or Trans is an umbrella term for people whose gender identity or expression differs from the sex assigned to them at birth.